Former Bryan Pastor Arrested, Bonds Out of Jail

By: Steve Fullhart & Meredith Stancik Email
By: Steve Fullhart & Meredith Stancik Email

Former Bryan Pastor Kris Erskine has been arrested after turning himself in on theft charges, this after he left the state during the investigation into his alleged wrongdoings.

It was News 3 that tipped authorities off to Erskine's new employment in the New York City area. A website promoted Erskine for services at Bethany Baptist Church in Harlem, a site KBTX let authorities know about, one they say they hadn't seen.

Erskine is accused of stealing money from his former church, Bryan's Shiloh Baptist. Authorities believe he took in the neighborhood of $10,000 for his own personal uses, including money that was designated for hurricane victims and scholarships among other things, this according to the church.

The pastor turned himself in early Monday morning, and was confined at 4:18 a.m. according to the county. When News 3 contacted Bryan PD about the arrest mid-Monday-morning, officials were unaware he was sitting in their local jail.

Erskine's bond was set at $5,000, but just after 1 p.m. Monday, he bonded out of jail.

Officials with Bethany Baptist Church in Harlem, say they will wait to hear from Erskine, before they take any action.

"Sometimes they just blow it out of proportion and we're not quick to judge," Duane Causweli with Bethany Baptist Church said. "We here at Bethany knew him different then from what he did in Texas, so when he comes back here we'll talk but I'm not quick to judge anyone."

Bethany Baptist Church tells us it had been looking for the ideal pastor for the church for years, and thought Erskine was the perfect match.

News Three tried to get in touch with Shiloh Baptist Church deacons who originally went to police with the allegations.

According to Deacon Willie Pruitt, the Brazos County District Attorney's office has told the deacons not to talk about the on-going case, but he says "I'm just happy he turned himself in and I'm happy he got a job."

Brazos County Justice of the Peace Tommy Munoz set Erskine's bond Monday morning, but no conditions were added. That means Erskine can leave the state.

News Three talked with the Brazos County District Attorney's about the investigation. It says the case will go to a grand jury in the near future.


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